2nd Edition

Practical Fire and Arson Investigation

    432 Pages
    by Routledge

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    Did you know. . .
    . . . that arson has been described as the fastest-growing crime in America?
    . . . that arson is the most expensive crime committed?
    . . . that over 8 billion dollars was estimated lost due to fires in 1994?
    . . . that an estimated 86,000 structure fires of incendiary or suspicious origin were reported in 1994?
    David Redsicker provides these statistics and much more, including practical methods, information, and advice for investigating these types of crimes, in Practical Fire and Arson Investigation, Second Edition.
    Extensively rewritten second edition of this practical manual - More than 40% new material!
    Practical Fire and Arson Investigation, Second Edition is a significantly revised, updated, and expanded new edition of this best-selling book in the Practical Aspects of Criminal and Forensic Investigations series, edited by Vernon Geberth. As in the first edition, specific details on the basic principles are presented, and advanced applied techniques for conducting a thorough fire and arson investigation are detailed.
    New topics covered in the Second Edition include:

  • Extensively rewritten chapters on determining origin and cause, eliminating accidental fire causes, investigating fatal fires and vehicular fires, and documenting the fire/crime scene
  • Fire scene photography using "painting with light"
  • Importance of evidence preservation and analysis in civil litigation of liability and product defects
  • Arson: The American Experience
    Fire Service
    Police Service
    Public Awareness
    Fire Investigation Methodology
    Model Arson Task Force
    Role of the Fire Investigator
    Six Basic Steps for Fire Investigation
    References and Selected Readings
    Arson Motives and Pathology
    Arson for Profit
    Commercial Fire Checklist
    Revenge and Prejudice
    Juvenile Fire Setters and Vandalism
    Crime Concealment
    Psychological Compulsion
    Mass Civil Disturbance (Riot)
    References and Selected Readings
    Building Construction: Fire Problems and Precautions
    Classification of Building Construction
    Building Components
    Structural Loads
    High-Rise Construction
    Structural Fire Precautions
    Fire Extension and Accepted Architectural Designs
    Design Problems
    Construction and Material Problems
    Fire Detection, Alarm, and Suppression Systems
    Neutralizing Fire Protection Systems
    Glossary of Building Terms
    References and Selected Readings
    Chemistry and Behavior of Fire
    Components of Fire
    Oxygen and Oxidation
    Fuel and Its Physical State
    Chemical Chain Reaction
    Other Terms Relating to the Chemistry of Fire
    Behavior of Fire
    Classification of Fire
    Phases of Fire
    Rate of Burn
    Structural Fire Spread
    Direction and Rate of Spread
    Burn Patterns
    Rapid Movement - Slow Movement
    Smoke and Flame Color
    Fire Suppression
    References and Selected Readings
    Determining Origin and Cause
    Physical Examination of the Fire Scene
    Exterior Examination
    Interior Examination
    Room and Points of Origin
    Fire Language
    References and Selected Readings
    Eliminating Accidental Causes
    Electrical Fires
    Gas and Flammable Vapors
    Building Heating Equipment
    Auxiliary Home Heating Equipment
    Cooking-Related Fires
    Children and Pets
    Improper Storage of Combustibles/Flammables
    Spontaneous Combustion/Ignition
    Clandestine Laboratories
    Construction, Renovation, and Demolition
    Direct Sunlight
    Product Liability and Subrogation
    References and Suggested Readings
    Investigating Fatal Fires
    Six-Phase Investigative Approach
    Fire Incident
    Examination of the Body
    Origin and Cause/Investigative Canvass
    Determining Investigative Procedure
    Cause of Death and Investigative Procedure
    Follow-Up Investigation
    Arrest and Trial
    Special Evidence at Fire Scenes
    References and Selected Readings
    Investigating Vehicular Fires
    Notification and Response
    Vehicle Collisions and Relation to Fires
    Vehicle Identification and Owner Information
    Salvage Examination
    Elimination of Accidental Causes
    Multiple Points of Origin
    Heat Indicators
    Other Factors
    References and Selected Readings
    Incendiary Fire Evidence
    Time-Delayed Ignition Devices
    Accelerants and Related Burn Patterns
    Legal Aspects of Evidence Collection
    Evidence Collection
    Identification of Evidence
    Laboratory Analysis and Testing
    Evidence Storage
    Shipment/Transferal of Evidence
    Presenting Evidence in Court
    Disposal of Evidence
    References and Selected Readings
    Documenting the Fire/Crime Scene
    Crime Scene
    Documentation Sequence
    References and Selected Readings
    Planning the Surveillance Operation
    Surveillance Methods
    Applying Surveillance to Arson Investigation
    References and Selected Readings
    Interviewing and Interrogation
    Investigative Canvass
    Evaluating the Subject
    Physiological Factors
    Unique Interview Situations
    Initial Interview Procedure: An Example
    Interviewing and Interrogation Strategies
    Common Interviewing Errors
    Summary of Guidelines
    Lying Witness
    Constitutional Rights of Individuals
    References and Selected Readings
    Court Qualification and Testimony
    Pretrial Testimony
    Trial Preparation
    Witness Stand Behavioral Guidelines
    Cross Examination
    Defense Expert
    Standard for Professional Qualifications of Fire Investigator
    References and Selected Readings
    Legal Aspects
    Problems of Proof in Arson Prosecution
    Other Legal Considerations
    Exigent Circumstances
    Criminal Search Warrant
    Federal Rules of Evidence
    Prosecution for Insurance Fraud
    References and Selected Readings


    David R. Redsicker, John J. O'Connor